The Beauty Of Simplicity, Creating Objects Of Permanent Value – Michael Anastassiades
I’ve been following Anastassiades for years. Waiting & hoping for one of my clients to say yes when I would suggest using them in their private homes. There is something about the confidence in his conviction to remain simplistic. Yet when you quiz him about a design, or a collection, as I always will if I see him, there is such a story behind each piece. He’s the most fascinating man. Cypriot born, and schooled in Industrial Design & Engineering at The Royal College, London. His work features in many permanent collections around the world. With a mission to create objects of permanent value, & in the beginning hand crafting each single piece, one by one, Michael set up his company in 2007 to produce unlimited editions of his designs. He mentioned once that 2007 was “…a time of the art design piece”. You will notice that he only ever uses a very limited palette of materials, brass or bronze, wood and glass. Materials that get better with time. He took the process of plating and patinating quite seriously, creating a product that will endure longevity. He is most successful in creating strong looking objects, not just to create a future classic. How refreshing to hear a designer speak in such an understated manner.
Kinetic Light One
Michael travelled the world to find the right workshops, extensive trips to India, he took a conscious effort to look for craftsmen and workshops that could develop his finishes correctly. His work was expanding, he couldn’t make everything himself anymore. From finding his glass people in the Austria and the Czech Republic and working with his Indian metal workers, assembly still always takes place in the UK. Something I remember Michael mentioning a few times during a recent conversation was that as a designer he doesn’t believe in making a run of pieces, his work should be unlimited, “design has a beauty to be available…”.
His glassware below, a collaboration between Michael & Ilse Crawford.
Anastassiades is most known for his lighting, compromising of 80% of his studio’s commissions. Geometric shapes, kinetic units, tubes, and oblongs, shiny surfaces and gleaming exposed lights bulbs. His Ball Lights are, I think his most noted piece. Used probably in the hundreds by Ilse Crawford in her residential and commercial projects, I know that they are one of the most desired pendant lights at Discover&Deliver. Selling his pieces via stores such as Lane Crawford in Hong Kong, Liberty and Sigmar in London, and also in Miami and Australia. His purest designs allow even the most nervous amateur decorator just go for it.
A quick snap I took in Stockholm a couple of months ago at Mathias Dahlgren…
I was in Stockholm for 48 hours during Stockholm Design Week in February. One of my key destinations was Svenskt Tenn to not only visit the power house that is this world of ST, but to take some time to understand his exhibition, ‘TO BE PERFECTLY FRANK”. Michael wanted to re-interprete some of Josef Franks designs. With hydroponic plants, all the objects you can see were designed for the exhibition, the tables, hanging lights, and the vase system. The birdcage cabinet you see at the back was in reference to tidying all your favourite things in plain sight. It was the most beautiful space, good job I got there first thing.
Anastassiades’ piece at the Nilufar Gallery in Milan. This follows the gallery’s commission to create the ‘Lit Lines’ series of lights exhibited at Palazzo Durini in 2011, and the ‘Tree in the Moonlight’ lamp which formed part of the Unlimited Collection in 2012.
This is Palmyra House in Nandgaon, Maharashtra India. Just outside of Mumbai on the Arabian Sea the house was bought as a refuge from the bustle of the city. It’s a giant 3000 sq ft space, set inside a functioning coconut plantation, and Anastassiades did the lighting. Killer isn’t it.
Tube Chandelier, part of the Unlimited Collection. Available by bespoke order at Discover&Deliver.
Michael’s most recent exhibition was at this years Euroluce in Milan. See, true to his word, wood, metal and glass. This is one of his new pieces, Tip of Tongue. Available for pre-order in July. After recently opening his own shop below his beautiful home in Waterloo, and a collaboration with Flos launching in September, he is still sticking to his original vision. He may be minimalist, but his work is highly luxurious. One day i’ll hope to have a Tube Light hanging in my hallway…
Images courtesy Michael Anastassiades & LWSY.